Rhino auction court case postponed to eve of auction

22 August, 2017, 21:46 | Author: Brenda Erickson
  • South Africa gives go-ahead to rhino horn auction

The world's largest rhino horn breeder, John Hume, has been given permission by the courts to auction his 264 rhino horn stockpile online over three days.

But global trade in rhino horns remains prohibited under the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Some leading conservation groups, however, believe it would have the opposite effect, spurring demand and encouraging poachers to more actively target rhinos whose horns could be laundered into the legal trade. A court there removed a moratorium on the domestic rhino horn trade earlier this year.

Also on Monday, the Private Rhino Owners Association (PROA) congratulated Hume.

Jones stated that the rhino auction will be fully compliant with national legislation and CITES worldwide protocols as foreign buyers are welcome to buy horn although they may not export it.

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The Department of Environmental Affairs announced on Friday that the case had been postponed. The government previously drew up draft regulations for a domestic trade and limited export of rhino horns that include allowing a foreigner with permits to export "for personal purposes" a maximum of two rhino horns.

Vietnam and China are key illegal markets for rhino horn.

As of last week‚ Molewa said no permits had been issued to buyers and in a media statement on Monday‚ the minister emphasised that Hume could only sell rhino horn to a person who had a separate (buyer's) permit to purchase rhino horns from him. Earlier this year, he won a case to overturn the nearly decade-long moratorium on the sale of rhino horn within South Africa's borders.


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